call for entries for ASBP 2021 Awards

ASBP Awards 2021

Supporters of enviromentally friendly building products ‘The Alliance for Sustainable Products’ (ASBP) are calling out for entries of their prestigious event, #ASBPAwards

To say that it has been a tough year would be quite an understatement, and next year’s award is consciously proposing to reflect the innovation utilised in the UK.

“We want to shine the light on transformative ideas and the people behind them. Ideas for which the time has come. In essence, we want to showcase your lockdown epiphanies, personal insights, innovative ideas, or radical action.” (Click on the image above for more information)

Deadline: 18th December 2020

Good Luck!

UPSTRAW – Building for change – Online training programme

In keeping with the global advancement of online learning, the straw building project, UPSTRAW, has partnered with the sustainable platform, MOOC (Massive Open Online Courses)

Offering free training, open to all, its is accessible wherever you are 24 hours a day!

Starting from the origin of straw construction, discover the energy performance of this material, the management of a straw construction project as well as the finishes.

It is aimed at designers (architects, design offices, construction economists) but also builders (masons, carpenters), wishing to discover straw insulation or deepen their knowledge. It may also be of interest to students in training or anyone wishing to learn more about straw construction.

The course is bilingual French / English.

Register here:

Constructing Excellence SECBE ‘People’s Choice Award’

Richard Dormandy and his team of ‘Holy Trinity’ in Tulse Hill are finalists in the ‘Construction Excellence SECBE – ‘People’s Choice Award’, in the catergory ‘Sustainability’.

We visited them last year and reported on the brilliant work that they are doing in not just utilising strength in community spirit (500 volunteers!) but in constructing this formidable build in an eco-friendly style (479 tonnes CO2 saved instead of 400 tonnes CO2 emitted) Tulse Hill Straw Build

Closing date is midnight Wednesday 1st July. Just one click is all that is needed. Vote here

UPSTRAW Database of Strawbale Buildings

The School of Natural Building team are drawing up a complete and comprehensive database of strawbale buildings in the UK and Ireland!

Interreg Database of Strawbale buildings
Through their partnership with other European countries, funded by Interreg and called UP Straw, the School of Natural Building (SNaB) is drawing up a database of all known strawbale buildings in the UK and Ireland. This database will be made public, (those parts that are not confidential), via a map held on the European Straw Bale Association website and elsewhere including that of SNaB. Part of this information is required to see if the activity of the partnership has increased the numbers of strawbale buildings in Europe, so dates of build are important. A major reason for publicising the numbers and locations is to show that this is indeed a viable and growing sector of construction, and to help our sector gain credibility nationally.

Please give as much information as you can about each project, but don’t omit a project if all you know is a few facts – they can do further research if they know where to look. Also, please include all projects you know, apart from those by Amazon Nails or Straw Works as they will capture those. And finally, please pass this on to anyone you think may have further information.

It would be most helpful to us if you could fill out the excel sheet with all the information you have. Follow this link. If you are unable to do this however, please use the table in Word and copy and paste it for each separate project. Follow this link for Word version. Once completed, please email it back to us.

We would like to get a really up to date idea of exactly how many strawbale buildings and of what type there are in the UK and Ireland, and to compare this with other European countries.

SBUK are sub-partners with SNaB on this project, and would very much appreciate it if you would share this as widely possible.

Thank you
The SNaB & SBUK team on behalf of UP STRAW


A new online publication has arrived: UPSTRAW YEAR BOOK 2019

This edition begins with an introduction on the benefits of building with straw.

Watch out for forthcoming issues!

These will feature projects on the INTERREG project and technical articles ➡️ ➡️ ️ ➡️ UPSTRAW

The UK’s group, as part of the UPSTRAW project are called ‘Constrawtium’. They are hard at work building the new Visitors’ Centre – Hastings, UK

Futurebuild 2020

Visiting @FuturebuildNow today?

Go see Barbara Jones @strawworks at the #NaturalBuilding area, stand G70

Together with @Terra_Perma_EB, @EarthBuildingUK, and @lime_products it is a full day of building demonstrations lined up for today and tomorrow!

Constrawtium update

Wow! Work on the Visitors’ Centre in Hastings is going through at a rapid pace.

Plywood is up and one of the Constrawtium crew is sanding it down before applying the wax for a surface finish

Instagram: @constrawtium

Airtightness and natural building materials by Judith Thornton

This is a great introductory blog to those of you who are new to the idea of working with natural building materials. It challenges the outcomes of what is considered ‘airtight’ and the relevancy of that within construction and comfortability to the user.

It is easy to understand and with no jargon, so it is suitable for the first time builder as well as the experienced constructor: Airtightness and natural building materials – Part 1

The second part of the article is available here: Airtightness and natural materials – Part 2

Judith presently works at Aberystwyth University on the BEACON project, which is funded through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) by the Welsh European Funding Office (WEFO). Her main interest is innovations in plant based building materials

From the Australian press…the good news keeps on coming about ESBG 2019

David Thorpe wrote for the Australian on-line journal, The Fifth Estate wrote about ESBG 2019:

ESBG2019 was supported by INTERREG for the umbrella project ‘UPSTRAW’.

Constrawtium in Hastings
Constrawtium in Hastings

As part of the UPSTRAW project a UK consortium, Constrawtium, are undertaking the building of the new Visitors Centre in Hastings

So nice to see the love spreading to the other side of the world. Thanks David x

Constrawtium at The Big Green Fair

This Sunday 29th September, 11am – 4pm, SBUK Director Mary Rawlinson is at the Big Green Fair

Mary is representing the Constrawtium group, which is a consortium of UK natural material builders enabled by the INTERREG/UPSTRAW initiative


The INTERREG/UPSTRAW deal promotes straw buildings to the public sector and Constrawtium are building the new Visitors’ Centre in Hastings, in association with Hastings Borough Council as part of this

She will be in the Stade Hall, Stade Space (the outside area between Stade Hall and the Jerwood Gallery and the Shipwreck Museum) between 11am – 3pm

Drop in and ask about the plans for this exciting UPSTRAW project